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The content of the line "Me papp!", despite it's implication of a wider abuse of Nagg
by Hamm and Clov, only has performative meaning in that Nagg wants papp now.
The specific desire and demand is not as irritating to Hamm as is the rhythmic,
schematic reality that Nagg exists on the stage. If Barney plays the hunger and
repression of Nagg, this becomes blurred. The larger pathos of Nagg must come
through as the composite of these "local" realities, which are not, on their own
applicable to most plays, but I had never seen it's necessity as clearly, nor felt it's
import so deeply.
go to the heart of the matter. Each character has at least one moment in which there
is an expression of their actual condition in the content of the text.
ground which Nagg traverses in this section of the play are patently moving.
Starting the speech with the bitterness of being denied the sugar plum Hamm had
promised him, and ending it with the discovery of Nell's death; this is arguably the
most momentous dramatic moment of the play. The text of the speech is, in
contrast to the Chronicle, clear in terms of what Nagg is talking about. It would be
almost impossible to argue that Nagg is not talking about his relationship to Hamm
here. No vague hinting here. Nagg peals away the skin and exposes the raw nerve
of the paternal relationship. This action is clearly contained within the content of
the text itself.